Where's the JavaScript?

Every once in a while people ask me, “if you’re so into JavaScript, why isn’t there any on your site?” The truth is, my point in making this site was first and foremost to make it accessible and completely XHTML compliant. Simplicity, I thought, was what I would spend my time on.

After seeing the cool stuff that Foo and other people have on their sites, I’m hoping to find some time to redesign my site to use more JavaScript and AJAX soon. Don’t know if that’ll be anytime soon, but it’s on my list of things to do.


  1. Julian Turner


    I am doing the same in reverse.

    I have started out with an AJAX driven version, but it suffers from accessibility problems, so I am going to offer two flavours, one AJAX driven, and one basic XHTML+CSS.

    I am going down this path, rather than a gracefully degrading AJAX page, as the latter is stretching my skills too far.

    Fortunately, the underlying index/database is the same, so it is just a matter of developing an ASP page that will generate plain XHTML+CSS.

  2. Nicholas C. Zakas

    Yeah, you need to be careful with that sort of stuff. I&#039m thinking I&#039m going to start by designing a really nice XHTML and CSS design and then augment it with Ajax components. Hopefully, this will make it degrade appropriately.

  3. Julian Turner

    Sounds like a good approach. I am trying as far as possible to make the AJAX and non-AJAX versions offer the same, albeit the latter is not as responsive.

    Some amateur thoughts in terms of degrading are:-
    - Have the server generate a static pages, with appropriate links, that are complete in their own right.
    - Include a script link to the basic AJAX Engine. Hopefully ignored if JS is not enabled.
    - Onload, test whether an HTTP component is available on the user page, and if so download any additional script functionality, and have the script replace the static elements with dynamic elements appropriate to AJAX.

    My reason for keeping them separate, was to give users the choice, rather than go through such a process.

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